About The Tour
We like to know where we are, we dream of where we would like to be, we often look back at where we have been. However, do we know where we are from?
British Tours, for many years, have hosted guests from all over the world who have visited the United Kingdom not just for the history and pageantry of the country but to try and tread in the footsteps of their ancestors.
It is well documented that many people from Great Britain left to search for a new, hopefully more prosperous life in the “new world”. Remember, until 1922, the Irish Republic was part of the United Kingdom and many Irish records are to be found in the UK National Archives.
For many, they visit not to find ancestors but to see where their fathers or grandfathers flew from, often never to return. Where they embarked for Normandy having “lived” training in the UK for months, sometimes years.
Coming to the UK prepared is one thing, we know many have completed extensive research and know exactly where they wish to go. However, we are also sadly aware that this preparation is often incomplete and research reliant on just a few snippets of information. It is so disappointing to arrive and then find, the church is closed, the certificates incomplete and in the case of airfields and former military bases that they are closed to private access or remain in military use and with very restricted entry.
We have a number of guides who are experienced genealogists and military historians. For example; Rod is a published author who has researched all of the war memorials is his home county and identified the fallen from the villages and towns. Rod also is a professional genealogist and has solved many a mystery with a “six sense” to look beyond the rumours and hearsay of family history and to track down long lost – long dead - relatives. Rod has an extensive archive and an equally extensive list of contacts in churches and parishes the length and breadth of the United Kingdom.
With so many trips and journeys postponed and delayed until safer times, British Tours are now offering to potential visitors the opportunity to prepare in advance for your visit, if indeed you are coming to step in the footsteps of your ancestors.
Why not drop us and email at firstname.lastname@example.org and outline what you would like to discover about your family or, if you already know a great deal and would like to visit bases or airfields, let us look to investigate what access might be possible. Very few bases are completely closed to the public given the right notice as we found out when visiting a former USAAF base and our guide, with the family of B17 Navigator drove, yes drove, from where his aircraft was parked, along the taxiway and then – after a final check with air traffic – drove down the runway!
If you are looking to visit a church or cemetery it can be very frustrating when you cannot find the grave when you make your visit. So, to avoid delays and disappointment our staff can look to contact the church, local historians and ensure that when you arrive you are fully briefed. Remember, you may have research that is a welcome addition to locals here in the UK so they will often be delighted to help you in return.
British Tours offers a flexible, affordable service and a service that will save you time when you do eventually visit the UK. Unsure, simply drop us an email and we will run your doubts, requests and hopes past our experts and, who knows, we may fill in the gaps even before you arrive! An email is all it takes.
Step in the footsteps of those of your family who went before you
"British Tours Ltd even solved one tricky problem: a South African looking for his father's birthplace from a pretty minimal clue. It had a good view of Cardiff docks and the street name had royal connections"
Nicholas Faith, The Independent on Sunday
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